Sometimes loving beer isn’t just about the latest limited release, collaboration brew or oak aged delight but it’s simply about enjoying a drink with nice people.
Occasionally my partner and I drive 8km to our “local” on a Wednesday for their cheap pints of Swan Draught. Our local is a bit run down, has horse races on several (small) screens and a few pieces of AFL and Peter Brock memorabilia, just as any good local should. The girl behind the bar is really friendly and knows most people by name, sometimes they put out baskets of hot chips for free. On one visit we were enjoying a pint by the fire and the barmaid came around to sell raffle tickets to win a meat tray. “We’re not in Mt Lawley anymore”, I thought and we swiftly bought 6 tickets. We didn’t win.
When we make a trip to our local we happily have a pint (or two) of Swan Draught and chat about nothing in particular over a packet of salt and vinegar chips. If the sun is out we’ll sit outside in the rarely used but rather nice beer garden. It appears only smokers sit outside. If it’s too cold outside we sit beside the fire.
We always drink Swan Draught when we are there and whilst it’s not my favourite beer but it’s by no means undrinkable and when you’re at your local it feels like the drink you are supposed to have in your hand. It’s cold, a little malty sweet and easy on the bitterness.
Recently my boyfriend and I caught up with his sister in Collie, another great small town in the South West. We found a nice little pub that had a few people sitting inside and the owner was kind enough to open the beer garden gate so we could have our puppy, Barley, with us too. The line up of beers on tap was about what you’d expect from a nice small town so we got a jug of Swan Draught. The three of us chatted, had a laugh and put a buck or two in the juke box for some cheesy 80s tunes. When we got hungry we ordered a serve of chips that were perfectly cooked with plenty of chicken salt. Happy Days!
Beer, laughs with good company and friendly bar staff – sometimes it’s just that simple.